Giro d'Italia - Stage 20

Stage 20, Brunico-Passo del Tonale, 176 km:

  1. Josi Jaime Gonzalez (Col) Kelme                 4.45.03
  2. Massimo Podenzana (Ita) Mercatone Uno      	1.43
  3. Felice Puttini (Ita) Refin                		2.10
  4. Gabriele Missaglia (Ita) Mapei            		3.02
  5. Fausto Dotti (Ita) Ros Mary                  	s.t.
  6. Germano Pierdomenico (Ita) Cantina        		4.02
  7. Bruno Boscardin (Sch) Festina              	4.50
  8. Evgeni Berzin (Rus) Batik                  	5.34
  9. Alessandro Baronti (Ita) Asics             	7.41
 10. Andrea Noe (Ita) Asics                   	       10.10
 11. Sergei Gontchar (Ukr) Aki
 12. Ivan Gotti (Ita) Saeco
 13. Roberto Conti (Ita) Mercatone Uno
 14. Marcos Serrano (Spa) Kelme
 15. Wladimir Belli (Ita) Brescialat
 16. Stefano Garzelli (Ita) Mercatone Uno
 17. Dario Frigo (Ita) Saeco
 18. Giuseppe Guerini (Ita) Polti
 19. Pavel Tonkov (Rus) Mapei
 20. Giuseppe Di Grande (Ita) Mapei           	     all s.t.

 24. Nicola Miceli (Ita)           			12:17 
 42. Glenn Magnusson (Swe)         			17:26 
 48. Lylian Lebreton (Fra)        			17:26 
 56. Axel Merckx (Bel)             			17:26 
 68. Alvaro Lozano (Col)           			17:26 
 96. Omar Pumar (Ven)              			22:04 
105. Zbigniew Spruch (Pol)         			22:04 

General Classification:

  1. Ivan Gotti (Ita) Saeco     	     91.15:48 
  2. Pavel Tonkov (Rus)               	 	 1:32 
  3. Giuseppe Guerini (Ita)             	 6:00 
  4. Serguei Gontchar (Ukr)           		10:27 
  5. Nicola Miceli (Ita)               		10:40 
  6. Giuseppe Di Grande (Ita)          		11:04 
  7. Wladimir Belli (Ita)              		12:44 
  8. Marcos Serrano (Spa)              		14:00 
  9. Stefano Garzelli (Ita)            		14:42 
 10. Jose Luis Rubiera (Spa)           		17:16 
 11. Andrea Noe (Ita)                  		19:11 
 12. Paolo Savoldelli (Ita)            		19:29 
 13. Felix Garcia Casas (Spa)          		19:43 
 14. Dario Frigo (Ita)                 		26:40 
 15. Jose Gonzalez Pico (Col)        		29:04 
 16. Leonardo Piepoli (Ita)            		30:37 
 17. Roberto Conti (Ita)               		34:04 
 18. Alberto Volpi (Ita)               		35:00 
 19. Evgueni Berzin (Rus)               	35:44 
 20. Massimo Podenzana (Ita)           		36:56  

 23. Axel Merckx (Bel)                		41:12 
 55. Alvaro Lozano (Col)                      1.53:50 
 71. Lylian Lebreton (Fra)          	      2.24:08 
 81. Omar Pumar (Ven)               	      2.35:20 
 94. Glenn Magnusson (Swe)          	      2.50:38 
102. Zbigniew Spruch (Pol)          	      3.04:06 

Stage 20 as it happened

11:28, 06/06/97: BRUNICO (Bolzano)- Pavel Tonkov has not abandoned the Giro d'Ita. The Russian rider, who fell yesterday on the descent of the passo di Campolongo, started stage 20, Brunico-Passo del Tonale over 176 km. After a medical visit, the second place in the overall at 1'32" from the maglia Rosa, received a injection for the pain on his right elbow. Yesterday when Tonkov fell he showed great character, clenching his teeth and reaching the finish with a difference of less than one minute from Ivan Gotti, even with a strong contussion to his right elbow.

14:33, 06/06/97: The group is resting a bit after two very tough stages and on the eve of the Mortirolo. Tonkov is not well due to his fall, Gotti is not interested in attacking, this frees a group to be able to breakaway.

The stage started with 114 riders, with Manzoni not starting because of pain in his arm because of a fall yesterday. So far since the start in Lido di Venezia 66 have retired.

At 5km the first attack: Podenzana, Baronti, Pierdomenico, Dotti, Boscardin & Gonzalez Pico (Winner of the Green Jersey). Missaglia hooks on. Berzin & Puttini counterattack. At 25km the seven have 21" over Berzin & Puttini; the group is being controlled by Saeco, Gotti's team, follows at 1'45".

At 30km the chasers catch the seven in front.

At Bressanone (38.4 km), at the Gp Gazzetta dello Sport award, Dotti passed in front of Berzin, the group is at 4'05". The average speed for the first hour is very high at 45.200 kmh.

The margin of the breakaway increases steadily, behind the group is not trying to catch them. At Campodazzo (64km from the start), the advantage is 9'36". Roscioli tries an attack from the peloton. At Bolzano, Roscioli follows the front nine at 9'40", the group is in a deep sleep and the gap increases to 12'15". The average speed after two hours is 44.850 kmh.

But now comes the attack of the climb to passo della Mendola.

15:27, 06/06/97: The group is at almost 15 minutes. The group has lost some time when confronting the climb of passo della Mendola.

At the passing of the Mountain Prize (Category 2, 10.4km, 1363 m) Podenzana is in front, ahead of Gonzalez Pico, Puttini & the other six. Roscioli is chasing alone at 13'15". The group is at 14'38".

16:00, 06/06/97: At Cavenzano (113km) the nine riders reached their maximum advantage over the peloton: 14'45". Roscioli has been caught.

At Cles (131.1 km from the start) the Intergiro Prize is won by Boscardin, then Baronti & Missaglia. Calcaterra is leading the peloton which is 14 minutes behind. The average speed at the Intergiro is 38.918 kmh.

The peloton increases their speed with view of the final climb of passo del Tonale: the gap is now 12'45".

16:33, 06/06/97: CHEPE'S GIRO IS GREEN - The Colombian has won stage 20 and secures the Green Climbers jersey in a way characteristic of the Prince of the Climbers. The attack by Tonkov at the end didn't impress Gotti, who continues in Pink.

PASSO DEL TONALE (Trento)- Colombia celebrates for all their great climbers. After Herrera, after Cacaito Rodriguez, today is the day of Jose Jaime Gonzalez Pico, called 'Chepe'. Gonzalez has dominated the climbers: since the Cervinia stage has worn the Green Jersey. Always ahead in the climbs, yesterday arrived together with Gotti's group, today he was in a breakaway since km5 with other riders and finished with his arms up high at the Passo del Tonale after a 171km breakaway.

In the last turns of the climb, Tonkov tried to attack, showing that he is superating his physical problems. When he saw that Gotti wasn't giving up, he desisted. Tomorrow the Mortirolo will decide the winner of the 80th Giro d'Ita.

Stage 20 Reports

Pavel Tonkov kept up his chase of overall leader Ivan Gotti and a second straight Giro d'Ita title Friday in the cycling race's 20th stage.

Russia's Tonkov, who started the day 1 minute, 32 seconds behind Gotti, rode despite elbow and knee injuries suffered in a tumble during a downhill section in the 19th leg.

Twenty-one riders pulled out following Thursday's tough stage, leaving 114 of out of the 180 who started the race.

Friday presented another mountainous route, 176 kilometers (109 miles) from Brunico to Passo del Tonale.

Meanwhile, paramilitary police investigating use of anabolic steroids in Itan gyms have carried out a raid that crossed paths with the Giro.

The raid, which occurred Thursday, took place in three cities, including at a hotel in Carano where members of the MG-Technogym team were staying following the 18th stage.

``It was not our intention to involve the Giro d'Ita in this incident,'' said Gianfranco Dainese, head of the operation.

``Our seizures were undertaken with regard to an investigation into the use of prohibited substances in gyms. That the raid took place during the race was a complete coincidence.''

After a lone breakaway on the last climb of the day, Colombian cyclist "Chepe" Gonzalez Pico (Kelme) won today stage 20. Thirty year old Jose Jaime, known as "Chepe" Gonzalez Pico, separated from the other eight riders with which he escape at km 5 and reached the finish alone. The Colombian -1,67 m tall & 57 kilos- opened an advantage of 1:43 from Itan Massimo Podenza & 2:10 from Swiss Felice Puttini, who finished third. The first group of riders, which included the favorites crossed the finished 10:10 later.

Jose Gonzalez gave Colombia their first Giro d'Italia stage win in two years on Friday.

He finished one minute 42 seconds clear of Italian Massimo Podenzana, with Swiss Felice Puttini 2:10 behind the winner after the 176 kms 20th stage from Brunico to this Dolomite mountain.

Three kilometres behind Gonzalez, Russian Pavel Tonkov showed no signs of his knee injury as he tested Giro leader Ivan Gotti on the 10 kms climb to the finish.

They finished more than 10 minutes behind Gonzalez, but the overall top three remained unchanged with Gotti still 1:32 ahead of Tonkov with Giuseppe Guerini six minutes behind his fellow Italian.


Colombian Jose Jaime Pico Gonzalez, called Chepe, went first over 5 of the 6 mountain prizes in yesterday's stage. With all this pouints, Gonzalez has mathematically already won the best climber's award for the Giro.

After their fall in the time trial, Leblanc, 3rd overall and Shefer 4th, retired yesterday. The Frenchman has passed his place as 'captain' of the team to Guerini, who is now in 3rd place overall.

First consequence: the sponsor has decided not to renew the contract next year. Technogym has informed in a comunique that they're distancing themselves from the event (the drug bust at MG's hotel rooms yesterday morning) and that they will not renew the contract in 1998.

Alvaro Pino was clear in the morning meeting. "We have to go for three objectives: the mountain jersey for 'Chepe', win the stage with Rubiera and get Serrano in the top 10 overall", he told his riders. And achieved three more: to place Rubiera ten overall, with the stage as a Team and lead the Team overall. With this three riders and the great work from young Jose Javier Gomez (23 year old and first major one like Rubiera), Alvaro Pino has more than made up for the letdowns by Dominguez, Edo & Serrano and the crash by Buenahora.

SATURDAY'S STAGE 21: Male to Edolo (239km) Not only is this the longest stage of the Giro, but it also features the most climbing (16,662 feet) and the toughest climb (the Mortirolo). And it all comes 24 hours before the finish at Milano. In other words expect plenty of fireworks. In recent years, the 12.6km, 10.2 percent Mortirolo has scuppered the chances of Indurain (in 1994) and Braham Olano (last year) and this time its 6090-foot summit comes just 20km before the finish.

SUNDAY'S STAGE 22: Boario Terme to Milano (165km) The final stage is only 165km, ending with multiple laps of the Parco Sempione in the heart of Milano. The sprinters still left should fight for the final bouquet...but last year, Sergei Uchakov gave Polti and opportunist stage win.

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